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From Hollywood to Dollywood
Many Mand in Japan - Part Three
The Japanese folk looked on in horror - tragic thing was that these weren't actually hooligans but English teachers from Australia

Konnichiwa peeps!!
Hope you all had a most excellent Queen's Jubilee weekend with lots of flag flying, tea drinking, fondant fancies, battenburg and crumpets!
Unfortunately, they don't seem to celebrate it in Japan but have been thinking of you all whilst hanging out with the footie'Hooligans' who are over here for the world cup - its footie crazy and I can't believe its June. Hurray!The months are whizzing by and once again - I've been getting up to all sorts of mandy mischief which I thought I'd bore you all with. So grab yourself a cuppa and a notepad - I'll be asking questions at the end .

As you may be aware - it's The World Cup which, crazily enough, is being hosted by Korea and Japan. There's been quite a bit of tension between the two countries in the past but it seems this footie spectacular is slowly rekindling the friendship and now we`re all bezzie mates - yayyyyy!! I've been busy mixing with the 'Hooligans!' - a word feared by all Japanese folk who are all scared to death of the famous British lager louts and after Sunday's events - I really can`t blame em! England played a friendly against Camaroon and a buzz went round the city that hooligans had been spotted by the waterside. Shirts off, standing on the table with a pint of lager in one hand and an England flag in the other. The Japanese folk looked on in horror - tragic thing was that these weren't actually hooligans but English teachers from Australia - yayyyy!! The party has just begun and I'm very lucky to be living near the Stadium - plus - the England team are staying on a nearby Island which is all very exciting especially as we`re intended to find a ferry and go 'Beckham' spotting. After the match on Sunday we went to an Irish pub to celebrate and it was madness! Lots of japs wearing 'I'm not a hooligan' t-shirts were dancing to very cheesy eighties British songs. Do we really have no street cred? Whilst a few rather tubby bellied bald men had stripped off their footie shirts and were boogying along, not very in time, to Right said Fred's 'I'm too sexy for my shirt' - sexy? it was scary!! We also saw a big big BBC correspondant who is out here reporting on the world cup. So big I can't remember his name but he`s Dermot someone if that helps! The pub is only liddle so we got chatting to him and he had spoken to Stan Collimore that morning - how mad is that!?

The BBC were all up there in the bar (on the 7th floor) so felt very excited and felt very proud to be British even though the locals think we're a whole load of 'hooooligans'. If I hear it being said one more time I think I'm gonna deck em - we're nice people honest! Besides hanging out with beer guzzling lager louts you may be interested to know that I have actually been taking part in other sorts of slightly more japanese activities. Well ok - kareoke - but only the Japanese know how to really do Kareoke in style! It's a serious night out over here. You get your own private booth with a telephone in which you can order drinks and food. With your own personal Kareoke machine and accompanying instruments such as tamborines and bongos you can sing away to your hearts content! It's fab. Have discovered I do a mean Lenny Kravitz cover of 'Are you gonna go my way!' Could have been born his daughter it's so dam good. Am thinking of taking the Kareoke rooms idea over to Britain and setting them up in Student Unions - it would go down a storm! Hurray for Kareoke.

May has actually been a pretty sad month. My flatmate Jill left for England after 19 months of teaching english in Japan.
To give her a special sending off, michelle and I took the day off to hang out with her. We were hoping to take a ferry over to Awaji Island (where England footie team are staying) for a picnic on the beach where we could indulge in a water sporting activity otherwise known as 'paddling'. Unfortunately the weather wasn't very nice so we scrapped that idea and went to USJ instead.
Universal Studios in Japan is only a year old (Brad Pitt opened it) and its fantastic. We also dragged along our new flatmate Leanne who had flown in from Oz that morning. No time for Jet lag - we had roller coasters to ride. USJ is a magical place! You feel as though your no longer in Japan but just stepped into a movie set.

The streets were lined with beautiful boutiques, diners, hotels and 60`s cars. The pavements crammed full with stars! Everyone was there - Tom Cruise, Julia Roberts, Arnie, Dick van Dyke, Brad Pitt, Betty Boop and even Marilyn Monroe - celeb tastic! Well ok - so I guess I like to exaggerate. They weren`t stars as the real people variety but each person had their name engraved in a star which was then laid into paving slabs. Bet you thought I'd met Brad Pitt. The rides were pretty spectacular too with no expense spared. No wonder the Japanese economy isn't so great with the amount of money spent on fireworks, setting people on fire, blowing up buildings and sending a giant inflatable King Kong out on a rampage every night!

We went on a Jaws ride which is a boat trip led by an extremely genki japanese boat driver. Armed with a machine gun the girl babbled away in Japanese so we had no idea what was going on until a huge rubber shark emerged from the water and tried to eat our boat - we kind of got the idea then! Jurassic park was set out just like in the movies.
This was another boat ride and as the theme music played cute little dinosaurs squirted water at us and messed around in the water - all very tranquil. That was until we entered the 'out of bounds zone' where the fence had been ripped apart and it all got a bit nasty from then on.
We were led though a dark building and the gentle boat ride suddenly transformed into the scariest roller coaster I've ever been and will ever go on again. They even managed to take a pic of us as we were hurled out of a dark tunnel and into a big lake where lots of japanese were laughing. The picture was extremely funny. I never knew my gob was that big! For additional torture - Jill dragged us on it again! Jurassic tastic! Other rides we encountered were Backdraft - lots of fire, Back to the Future which made you feel a wee bit car sick especialy when your hurled into a dinosaurs stomach and back out again.
Before we stepped into the car a steward whittered away in Japanese for a good 10 minutes where we all nodded our heads enthusiastically.
After 10 minutes she kind of stopped, looked at us and asked if we understood Japanese - not a clue! Turns out we had been nodding enthusiastically at all the wrong bits! - doh!!

Terminator 2 was a 3D show and there was a spectacular stunt show taken from the movie 'Waterworld'. They pulled a poor girl out from the audience who was dressed in the all essential Japanese garment - a plastic raincoat - it kind of looks like your wearing a plastic bag - where they then proceeded to throw a bucket of water over her whilst the audience clapped, cheered and screamed with laughter. What strange sense of humour theses people have! The day ended with wonderful fireworks display on a big lake where they had floating islands with dancers wearing spectacular glittertastic costumes. Oh and occasionally the odd dinosaur floating around.
King Kong also made a guest appearance as a giant inflatable ape popped up from one of the buildings and a policeman hurled himself off a town hall building - a bit unneccessary I thought but very good! USJ is such a fantastic place that I have now decided to quit my job as a teacher and get a job as a dancing girl. I could so see myself in a little pink lycra sparkly number.

Jill had to leave at 6.00 the next morning so we had a big sleepover, gave pressies and then got up at a ridiculous time in the morning to say goodbye.
Still very sleepy we walked with her into the city to find a taxi. Pretty normal you may think except we were kitted out in pyjamas, fluffy slippers and armed with teddies.
We're used to people staring at us for being a bit different so I guess wandering around the city in your nightclothes wasn't gonna make any difference. Now she has gone it is very quiet and very sad. However, have been keeping ourselves busy such as going to a famous bar in Osaka called Betty Mayonnaise.

The bar is run by a group of extremely beautiful women who pour your drinks, chat to you and then give you a spectacular cabaret show with the most awesome costumes.
Pretty normal except they are all men dressed as women and delighted in showing us their false boobs. One man didn't even make an effort to look like a woman and took to the stage in a little tropical fruit number complete with moustache, beard and hairy chest - it was horrific! especially when he got the toilet plungers out but we won't even go there! We pretended it was our friend Gavin's birthday so they all sang happy birthday and gave us a free bottle of champers! Hurrah for not knowing how to speak Japanese! Scam tastic! Other news is that I've now transferred to a different school which is fun and am teaching lots of kids. It's great acting like a 5yr old again - am so at home! It's also getting very very very hot out here now! We`re talking humid tastic!! so the fan in our apartment is constantly on the know whats coming next!!!! - FANTASTIC!!

I'm sorry! Must be the hot weather - keep getting all delirious!! Am off on my hols soon and am going with Michelle to a small Island called Ockinawa where we intend to spend the whole time lying on the beach - am looking forward to it very much.

In August it's Horishima and then Tokyo. Oh and of course it's the World cup right now. Hooray England beat the Argies. Have been to many World Cup partys and have a feeling there will be many more so will keep you posted.
Watch out for the England v Nigeria game on the 12th. It's being played in Osaka which is near where I live. Kobe stadium is very near to my house too (in fact 10minutes!) and some of the finals may be played there so watch out for that.
I'm off to buy a hooligan t-shirt but will be in touch with all the latest World Cup happenings later in the month! Have a fab June and don`t forget to keep waving those
England flags! The Japanese men have all gone Beckham hairdo styley crazy - its very funny!!! Take care and have fun
Loads of love and pink fluffy cuddles mandy mand xx

P.S Am missing british gossip!!!! Whats happening in big brother?? how is Will Young?? Did Sonia really kidnap her baby in Eastenders. Any help on these matters would be most appreciated

Mandy Mand in Japan
I realised that wearing a black and white polka dot lace thong was not the best move!

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